The Sicilian recipe for dried figs gives us a healthy, delicious and extremely sweet snack that we can not only enjoy as soon as it is ready, but also reserve it for the Christmas holidays, when it is customary to eat it between a game of cards and a bingo. In addition to being versatile, lending itself to the creation of various Sicilian sweets forgotten and not, dried figs are rich in properties and versatile in the kitchen. If you want to find out more, all you have to do is read: we explain how to dry and preserve figs .
Dried figs, properties
What dried figs are good for is easy to say. They are high in sugar and low in protein and fat. Their calorie content is not indifferent: they contain about 250 per 100 grams, well over the 54 of fresh fruit, but this is a prerogative of dehydrated or dried fruit, in which sugars and other nutrients are concentrated as a result of water loss.
At this point the question arises: how many dried figs can you eat a day ? Considering how each of them weighs about 20 g and contains 54 kcal (remember that this caloric intake corresponds to 100 g of fresh fruit), we advise not to exceed 2-3.
Thanks to the fiber content, they help regulate intestinal function and prevent constipation. Finally, they are a concentrate of mineral salts , and therefore energizing and remineralizing. What are figs bad for and who can't eat them ? Due to their high sugar content, among the contraindications they are not ideal for those with diabetes or who must follow a diet with reduced sugar content.
Dried figs, Sicilian recipe
To prepare dried figs with the Sicilian recipe, as tradition dictates, you will only need fresh and perfectly ripe fruit and… the sun. Yes, this is the second but essential ingredient if you want to make this delicacy as it used to be. How are sun-dried figs made ? Nothing simpler.
- 1 kg (or more) of ripe and firm figs
- Clean the figs well, eliminating any imperfections. During the selection phase, naturally choose healthy and well-preserved fruits, free of stains or deteriorated parts.
- Cut them in half lengthwise and distribute them, one at a time and with the cut side facing upwards, on a platter or cutting board.
- Cover them with a cloth (similar to a mosquito net, so that air and the sun's rays pass through but which protects the fruits from insects and dust). This operation also serves to prevent worms from forming in the dried figs .
- Keep them exposed to the sun all day and take care to bring them home in the evening. Continue like this for about a week, until the figs have completed their drying.
- Now transfer them to an airtight container or inside a glass container
How to make dried figs in the oven?
If you want to avoid the concussion deriving from the preparation of sun-dried figs, you can make them in the oven at home. To obtain them, simply place them on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and set the ventilated mode at a temperature of about 40°. Don't forget to turn them from time to time. As for timing, they will be ready once perfectly dehydrated.
How to boil dried figs
Some recipes, in addition to drying, provide for the blanching of the fruit. In this case, once dried in the sun, boil them quickly and let them drain, then let them dry in the sun for good and keep them for the winter in a dry and dark place inside a suitable container.
How do you soften dried figs?
Just keep them soaked for a few hours in water, fruit juice or liqueur. Alternatively, you can soak them in a container with a little raisin wine and let them rest until they become soft.
How to eat dried figs?
Many use them in doughs to enrich sideboard cakes or leavened desserts. But also special bread and rolls. They are the absolute protagonists of Christmas desserts throughout Italy but perhaps not everyone knows that they can be enjoyed as part of an aperitif, perhaps a platter of cold cuts and cheeses accompanied with honey. And sipping together, why not, an excellent Chardonnay . But they are also delicious in various savory preparations, to which they give a welcome touch of sweetness.
Sicilian sweets with dried figs
Well, once ready, in addition to being able to taste them naturally, you could appreciate them in one of the many Sicilian desserts that see them as protagonists. We are talking, for example, of buccellati , soft Trapani fig biscuits . Also delicious are the dried figs covered in chocolate , with or without half a nut placed inside them, and treat yourself to them when the desire for sweets has taken over. Or even give them to friends and family.